CONSTRUCTION OF A CAUSEWAY BRIDGE ACROSS THE LAKE URMIA AND ITS INFLUENCE ON DRYING TREND OF THE LAKE
Keywords: Causeway Bridge, Lake Urmia, T-Test, Precipitation, Playa
Abstract. Construction of a causeway bridge on the Lake Urmia accelerated the drying trend of the largest hyper-saline lake of the world. The objective of the research is to investigate the differences of precipitation and river discharge before and after initiation of the construction of the bridge in 2000. The study area was the watershed of the lake. The averages of the precipitation data in the two periods before and after the project have been interpolated by IDW based on GIS Geostatistical Analyst. The two interpolated precipitation layers were used to be plugged into Student T-test equation in GIS in a spatial basis. To do this, the study area was divided to 25 regions based on drainage sub-basins. Less than 30 sample areas were randomly selected as cases from each of the regions to put into the equation. The discharge data were also compared for the two periods. The results indicated that except in some limited areas, the precipitation differences in the two periods are significant. This means that there were little changes in precipitation and river discharge in the area and consequently the drying may be caused mainly by hydrodynamic changes in the lake due to construction of the causeway. However, it can be argued that the changes in the lake’s surface area are accompanied by changes in precipitation and river discharge. The t test statistic can be applied samples based on spatial analysis.